Hundreds rally at Obama campaign offices for Bradley, veterans arrested

In a coordinated set of actions, Bradley Manning supporters–led by veterans including Scott Olsen–rallied at and occupied Obama campaign offices on the West Coast yesterday, twelve arrested

By the Bradley Manning Support Network. August 17, 2012.

Iraq War veterans (left to right) Michael Thurman, Scott Olsen, and Joshua Sheppard occupying Obama’s campaign office in Oakland in support of Bradley Manning.

Six veterans and activists in Oakland, and five more in Portland, OR, were arrested Thursday night at Obama campaign offices for occupying the spaces in solidarity with accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower PFC Bradley Manning. Dozens of veterans and anti-war demonstrators coordinated a West Coast set of actions that also included protests in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Seattle.

Among the approximately 100 Oakland protesters was Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen, who participated in the sit-in and explained, “We occupied the President’s campaign office to raise awareness about the injustices Bradley Manning has endured. Bradley has sacrificed for us, doing what was right despite potentially spending the rest of his life in jail.”

In Los Angeles, Iraq War veteran Kevin Baker explained why he supports the Nobel Peace Prize nominee: “Generals say Bradley Manning put lives at risk, but they’re the ones who put us at risk, keeping these things secret and lying us into war.”

Protesters delivered a letter to campaign staff members, which they requested be sent to President Obama at the main campaign headquarters in Chicago. The letter makes its demands clear: that President Obama pardon PFC Bradley Manning, accounting for both his abusive treatment in a Quantico prison cell and the president’s own unlawfully prejudicial remarks that Bradley “broke the law.”

Rallying at the entrance of Obama’s Oakland campaign office. Campaign staff eventually agreed to email it to the national headquarters. Still, several activists remained in each city awaiting President Obama’s response to their demands, and police eventually took six in Oakland and six in Portland into custody.

Veterans are calling for similar actions nationwide during the Democratic National Convention, and for rallies at Ft,. Meade, MD when Bradley returns to court on August 28, and again on October 1.

Oakland, California

Oakland, California

Oakland, California

Los Angeles, California
Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon

26 thoughts on “Hundreds rally at Obama campaign offices for Bradley, veterans arrested

  1. You can not ask for pardon PFC Bradley Manning, at President Obama, just because he is the principal in this matters, remember his abusive treatment un Afganistan, Irak, Libia and now Siria, He has no soul, he doesn´t care about all veterans that are fightinig for incorrect causes. Is just to please Israel¨s gob.

    • I do agree with you that Obama is a fraud, a liar and a Republican in disguise. Spectacularly more whistle blowers have been prosecuted and jailed during three and a half years of his term than in the 8 years of George W. Bush’s. This scumbag had the chutzpah of declaring that Bradley Manning’s pretrial conditions in Quantico met “our high standards of justice and were not at all inhumane” and more of that BS.
      Choosing between Obama and the republican bastard (Romney) is like choosing between cancer and leprosy!
      Another campaign should be launched in order to withdraw the Nobel Peace Prize from this liar and give it to Bradley Manning, but…how independent are the members of the Nobel prize Committees in Norway and Sweden? The current Swedish government has converted Sweden in a vassal state of the US, like Britain, etc…
      Obama and Hillary Clinton, as well as the Republican party and other right wing extremists have more or less openly declared that they want Assange killed one way or another, I don’t expect any “clemency” from all those vultures for Bradley either, the corporate media have already committed a systematic character assassination of both Julian Assange and Bradley Manning, I am saddened that many of my friends believe what’s written on those rags and what radio and TV commentators say, only an ultra strong movement of solidarity and herculean efforts of the defense team, as well as a not corrupt judge and jury members might achieve Bradley’s acquittal.
      One more thing: Israel is not to blame for the bloodshed in Syria, the horrible regimes of Iran, Saudi Arabia, and other Islamic dictatorships, for Karzaí’s corrupt regime in Afghanistan or for the atrocities committed by the Taliban when they were in charge and now that they are trying to regain power again in Afghanistan. Netanyahu is not my cup of tea at all but with all those horrible neighbors, you can’t blame the Israeli government for being an ally of the US, which, unfortunately, makes the Jewish state yet another US vassal. In any case: my main concerns now are Manning and Assange (without forgetting the Pussy Riot girls in Moscow!) let’s all hope for the best. I am sure the peoples of the ME want peace, it is the leaders who don’t, letting the world know about the atrocities committed by US soldiers (most certainly on drugs) and about the lies of Bush and Blair (among others)is a heroic deed for which those scumbags in power should be held responsible and appear before another Nürnberg Tribunal of War Crimes.

      • “I am saddened that many of my friends believe what’s written on those rags and what radio and TV commentators say”

        I have to second that, with great sadness.

        What may be even worse is the feeling amongst people that this is something not relevant to them, something far away, not important, not impacting their lives.

      • I also empathise with your comment about friends, and other people I thought better of, and yes, it is astonishing that they don’t grasp how this affects them in so many ways, and yet they seem happy to accept the status quo and all the b/s that goes with it. Very sad for humanity. For Manning (and Assange) it is a lot more than just sad. If another life is lost over this, on top of the lives already cruelly and cowardly snuffed out, then what hope is there?

  2. As a Vietnam Vet I am proud of you. Bradley Manning is one of my heroes. We shall keep up the fight to see him released and honored. Would have been with those in Portland, but was ill and had to stay in bed.

    Stay safe!

  3. would love one day to see all this secret BS the Military hands out every day abolishd and the truth spread wide and far for the world to see , But that will never happen as the Military thinks everything they do is some sort of a conspiratory thing that needs to be hidden from the free world less they know what there up to and know that Amerika is waging un lawfull warefare against the rest of the world and thinking there is nothing can be done about it .
    Bradley Manning is only ONE to try to tell it like it is ..While most already know ..Its only a few that are un justley lockd up and tortured and atempted to Quiet and conceled from the world less they speak the truth the Amerikans want to hear and the Govt and Military so desperatly want to hide ..
    Hope one Day Bradley Manning will be free to speak out and be heard world wide,Only time will tell…Already too Damn Long ….Frank Blackstone

    • Bradley Manning deserves more than freedom. He deserves to have his name cleared and his values recognized as American values.

      We Americans also need to remember that we are not passive observers, no matter how much we might tell ourselves there’s nothing we can do. We are paying to prosecute Bradley Manning, each one of us.

      Our taxes also support the secret wars you speak of, and that means they support secret renditions, deaths and torture.

      I do not understand the President, but one also needs to remember that all of us are far away from each other physically, only able to come together here on the bulletin board or a street corner or campaign office as some of these wonderful veterans have done.

      We need to remember that the President is only one man, and he is a man with a family on display every day and an audience with some dangerously racist and/or economically frustrated members, who will blame him for the actions of the secret mob because he is the one they can see.

      We are all only humans, occupying our differing roles, far away from each other. Running the “country” is not what one might assume, and none of us can know what those in other roles truly experience. We were never there. Washington, D.C., is far away from most of us. We have to accept that there are things we cannot know and must not assume.

      I would really like to see communities come together on this with public safety employees given a special role. I would like to see better communication with police, for example; instead of putting them on the other side of a culture clash, why not share information with them instead? Is it possible? I went to a gathering for Brad Manning in Westwood last week and met the coolest, cutest young kids –they were almost all young—really good kids, none of them staring into cell phones, all talking, wondering what the hell they can do to help. There was a police car hovering about 25 yards down the street, and I considered walking over to whoever was in the car and saying hello, and maybe giving the officers a handout on veteran actions that took place that day in L.A., which I mailed to each L.A. County Supervisor and their support staff. I have yet to hear back from any of the Supes, but at least they know that these protests at Obama’s campaign offices took place in their city. I did not approach the police, but I wondered if they would be receptive, or hostile. I just read a great book by Norm Stamper that makes me appreciate, all over again, the daily horrors they face in their jobs.

      I can’t shake the feeling most cops are good cops. The ones who are good demonstrate their goodness at these gatherings by refusing to brutalize peaceful people. Like Captain Lewis of Philly who demonstrated so beautifully and was arrested at Occupy Wall Street. Those are the ones we need to speak with. We need to talk about our country AND our communities.

      I would like to see a non-confrontational effort to communicate with these folks. I think it has to start at home, with people we can develop relationships with.

      In this day and age where everyone gets on planes and flies here and there thinking to accomplish things, I don’t know if this is even possible. The Net is a wonderful way to exchange information, but I also fear it is causing our attention to focus itself on people and things far away that we cannot hope to impact, at the expense of the actual physical world, and real people, right around us.

      Everyone yelling about “revolution” ought to read Animal Farm again. Violence just leads to more violence. Communication can lead to a different way of governance, but it has to start at home. It is hard and painful and embarrassing and unglorious and yet heroic in a quiet way: just communicating and caring for those right around us.

      For patriots, that means that all of us who care must support these vets coming back from these wars in every and any way possible, and help them become warriors for peace, to build a community of ideas here at home.

  4. Bradley Manning is a hero in my book, and should be praised for his courage to speak up about the abuse, torture and murder that is going on in the military in the name of freedom. It’s all lies and the President knows it. Do the right thing and free Bradley Manning. Thank you.

  5. On 3/16/1968 Army Task Force Barker’s US troops slaughtered 600 unarmed women, children and old men in the villages of MyLai in South Vietnam. Hundreds of soldiers had been sent out to kill communist guerrillas. None were found. All troops are supposed to be familiar with the Geneva Convention, which makes it a crime to harm any non-combatant, or even a combatant who has laid down his arms because of wounds or sickness. The Law of Land Warfare from the US Army Field Manual specified that orders in violation of the Geneva Convention are illegal and not to be obeyed. This law should still on the books.

    Only one good helicopter pilot tried to stop the MyLai massacre. For a year, Army HQ covered up the war crimes, like Paterno covering for his rapist football program. So many individuals knew about these monstrous evils, and, each time, only one had the courage to leak the info.

    Ron Ridenhour waited until after his return to civilian life in 1969 to write to his congressmen about hushed-up atrocities during the Vietnam War. His timing was such that the military could not scapegoat him as they have Bradley Manning, pretending that the exposure of the crime is the problem, rather than the crime itself. To evil men, the only thing that matters is being able to continue to cover up their crimes. One of their techniques, to try to point the finger elsewhere, is to blame the person who exposes them.

    Laws have been passed to protect whistle-blowers. Unfortunately, the courts martial consider themselves above US law. As in 1968, the truth is: the failure to report a crime is itself another crime.

    Four decades later, Manning proved to be the most courageous American soldier in the Middle East. He reported another massacre of innocent civilians, one that his superior officers again tried to cover up. His timing was bad, or he just didn’t have as strong a sense of self-preservation as some previous whistle-blowers have had. We’re working to see that this mistake does not cost him his life.

  6. Yeah! a campaign to withdraw the Nobel Prize for the Peace from Obama and to give it to Bradley Manning should start right now! What the hell has this sorry excuse for a president achieved for world peace so far?


  7. A word I like to apply to Bradley Manning is ‘lamplighter’. I first heard Frank Serpico use the term, said he preferred it to whistleblower. Maybe being a cop had something to do with that.

    But that’s surely what Bradley Manning has done … he’s lit the lamp for all of to see.

    First of all to notice just how damn dark it is without his light.

    Then perhaps to remember ‘one if by land, two if by sea’, the ‘Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, Frank Serpico, Daniel Ellsberg … and to be thankful for Bradley Manning … thankful that ‘the right stuff’ is still present in young … americans.

    Small ‘a’ americans … as Paul Craig Roberts wrote the word the other day. My guess is that Americans are like Barack Obama and Mitt Romney and the rest in DC … that the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Syria are American wars.

    And that we’re the americans. And that our fellow american, Bradley Manning, has raided his lamp to light our way.

  8. Lets all hope that the President will eventually do the right thing , It usualy is not the man being president it is his surrounding Politicians and Military Might that dictate his actions in most cases . Presidents leaving office have the power to Pardon individuals that they see deserving , Perhaps one day Obama can do the right thing for Bradley Manning . And while hes at it maby Leonard pelteir another political prisoner of the Federal Govt far too long ..Frank Blackstone

    • I just now am reading about what happened on Pine Ridge in 1973 in a book called “Agents of Repression.”….something, can’t remember the rest of the title.

      I’m astounded that Leonard Peltier is still locked up.

      They didn’t teach us anything about Leonard Peltier in public school.

  9. One thing is certain. And that is the fact that God will reveal all things…and is. He gives us the choice to repent of our evil actions as so to forgive us. If we do not repent, then be CERTAIN that all evil is judged with or without the court of the land. Blood is on the hands of ALL Americans who have not repented for this war. Job 4:8 “According to what I have seen, those who plow iniquity and those who sow trouble harvest it.” God has raised up Bradley Manning and Julian Assange to “reveal” truth of what is hidden. It is for us to repent when truth is revealed. In our repentance, God will hear our prayer for these men and all those who are scapegoats to an unjust system of the Beast…and free them. Not by the power of man, but by His Power. Take this to heart and may God forgive us for any involvement of bloodshed. I pity those soldiers so eager and hungry to kill…as it will return onto there own heads. As for the American Leader in charge of his hosts…all the more accountable. May God shine His Light on all things and cleanse this land of bloodshed.

  10. Dear Deann Etheridge,
    alas, the deity worshiped by the Republican and Democrap Parties, the big corporations, the US governments and all powers that be is NOT the one of the real believers who follow the Jewish and Christian faiths, their god is Mammon, the god of money.
    Do you believe that Obama has a conscience? That the Clinton bitch gives a darn about G’d and other moral issues? That the “Latter Day’s Saint” Romney cares more about God than about money?
    An old rabbi used to say that “G’d uses good people and that evil people use Him.”
    Just think of the “Most Catholic Majesties” Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain, Torquemada the Inquisitor, the papacy, the instigators of the countless pogroms in Russia and Poland, and so on and so on and so on and so on…
    As far as I am concerned, let me tell you that I don’t trust any political leader who has to flaunt their religiosity (like Paul Ryan, Rick Santorum, etc. etc.) nor those hypocritical individuals hiding behind the Bible to preach hatred and intolerance. to call the USA “G’d’s Own Country” is the worst chutzpah of all times! It is a nation that has committed incredible horrors in Latin America and elsewhere.
    If that “hot spot” really exists, I hope that all those dead corrupt evildoers are already rotting there and that the ones now in power one day will burn there for all eternity together with Hitler, Goebbels and all the Nazi leaders, Stalin, Lenin, Mussolini, Ceausescu, Franco, (once Spain’s Caudillo By The Grace of G’d…and the Pentagon) Ferdinand and Isabella, Torquemada, Nixon, Ronald Reagan, etc.
    Obviously, Obama, the Clinton bitch, the despicable Tony Blair, Condoleezza Rice and thousands of other infamous leaders fear the truth brought to light by Assange and Bradley Manning, the truth is to those horrible individuals like a crucifix to Dracula!

  11. You can wait for God or go out and do something God has never stepd up to the front of anything Ghosts and Gods are for weak people to hide behind and pray to and beleive they will will give them the kingdom and virgins and everlasting peace , Well look around the wealthy already have it ..and the Fools thinking there God will do it for them , well thats there own faults when nothing happens ..There was a time when Truth would make you Free , Now its a plague spreading fear in everyone , The average people dont care about the truth , Its just an excuse to come on here and Gripe …The Govt will never desclose anything resembeling the truth to the ones being Governd ..So everyone praying for Bradley manning should Shout a little louder maby the ones up front will hear them …Frank Blackstone

  12. Dear Mr. Blackstone,
    thank you for your comment, I don’t feel you are contradicting my thoughts on this matter but rather that what you state is an addition to what I answered to Mr./Ms. Etheridge about crooked and lying politicians who flaunt their religiosity and belief in God in order to get votes (mainly) from the inhabitants of the Bible Belt whose thousands of televangelists preach hatred and intolerance whilst using God and the writings of others (in this case of those who wrote the Bible)in order to justify their bigotry and chauvinism. I always ask all those who shout that “the US is God’s Own Country,” that “God Hates Fags,” and more of all that BS if they would so kind as to give me God’s e-mail address, telephone- or FAX number, so that I can ask Him some questions myself, since they seem to know all these things “from the horse’s mouth…”
    In any case I still say that the deity worshiped by the big bosses of the corporations, the Republicans, etc. are Mammon and the Golden Calf.
    The Spaniards have a saying, “A Dios rogando y con el mazo dando!” which means more or less: “Pray to God, (and ask Him what you want) but at the same time don’t lye down (waiting for a miracle to happen) and do something yourself! Prayers for the release and acquittal of Bradley Manning are OK, but, as you say, the voices and acts of those who are appalled by the arrogance of those criminals in power have to be loud and relentless. BTW: I like the term “lamp lighter” better than “whistle blower!” that’s what Bradley Manning and Assange are!

  13. America as a police state; attempting to rule its own populace and the world by guns, murder and imprisonment. Bradley Manning, an innocent child seeing clearly and stating,”The emperor has no clothes.” He represents the best in all of us. We must save him and ourselves. God’s peace to All. It is Love that will rule forever.

    • Thank you for living up to your beautiful Okinawan name. Okinawa is the home of the most peaceful and loving people I know of. They spread their culture through their wonderful singing and dancing. Long live Okinawa.

  14. As some of those who were key to ending the Big Money U$/U$$R SE Asia War 40 years ago, we urge a complete unconditional release and full compensation to Brad Manning, and all other whistle blowers, who know that Big Money War is a Crime, and that the Little People for too long have been victims of the Big Money War Criminals.


  15. Far too Military Influanced and Fear generation on the Political playing field , The Civilian Political figures are afraid of the Military figures that are Generating the fear that the Commies are comming attitude and the nukes are going to rain down on the Jews living in there ocupied Land . It is fear full thinking pulling the rains of the world , And it is a criminal act to speak the truth surounding it all ,
    Hay’ it is amazing the fear even about the Global Warming and the posibilaty the ocean could one day rise to a fearfull level and the Political agenda to Hush that up and not even alow it to be descussd on the News stations,newspapers,or radio talk..So the Fear is everwhere , Like Chicken man once said ..(ok too young to remember Chicken Man)..”Its everywhere its everywhere” …Ah’ Bradley Manning growing Old in there Jail while they figure out what he said , did or could say if releasd …The Military doesnt like him ratting them out and the Politicians as i said are afraid of them ..So meanwhile he grows old and hidden away silenced in there Jail awaiting a Person with the Courage to stand up to the Military and release him to speak the truth ..Ah’ But growing old so the truth is History , And we all know the Military and Amerika never learns from History …Repets the same mistakes over and over again and again ..seeking an eye for an eye and already blinded by there fear……Frank Blackstone

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *